SIM Card Removed Messages Requiring Reboot

REPRODUCIBILITY (% or how often): Various
BUILD ID = OS VERSION (Settings > About product): 4.1
HARDWARE (XA2, Xperia 10…): Various
UI LANGUAGE: English
REGRESSION: (compared to previous public release: Yes, No, ?): Yes - Maybe

DESCRIPTION:

Phone displays ‘SIM Card Removed’ message on phone (mine is XA2 but plenty of other users have experienced this going back years on other phones - see Occasional 'Sim Card Removed' Message on XA2' ) and other Sailfish OS versions. This can be several times a day or not at all for a few days - there appears to be no consistency. It is not a hardware fault as the same phone with the same SIM card reflashed back to Android never gets this problem for weeks on end and it has been experienced by multiple users on multiple phone models including XA2, Xperia X, Intex, Xperia 10, etc. This problem was prevalent on SFOS 2 but seemed to get better on SFOS 3 (I never had this problem on SFOS 3 - same phone, same SIM card) but now seems common again on SFOS4. The various workarounds listed on Jolla Together (e.g. disabling SIM services) do not seem to make any difference, niether does switching off mobile data, or manually setting the mobile network rather than letting it find one automatically, or restarting ofono. The only way to fix this problem is to re-boot the phone. With the problems of no audio in phone calls, exchange email synchronisation failures, and this problem I am now having to re-boot my phone several times every day and is is getting very frustrating. Part of this issue is that when this problem happens you often don’t know it until several hours later when you happen to pick up the phone and look at it. By this time you may have missed both phone calls and text messages without even realising … These very basic problems, often ongoing for years across multiple OS releases and different phone models, really need to be fixed please (this is not a complaint, just a frustrated plea for action!)

PRECONDITIONS:

None

STEPS TO REPRODUCE:

  1. Do nothing and wait
  2. ‘SIM Card Removed’ message pops up at random intervals
  3. Reboot phone to restore mobile connectivity

EXPECTED RESULT:

Phone works … as a phone.

ACTUAL RESULT:

Phone doesn’t work as a phone without multiple and ongoing reboots.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

(Please ALWAYS attach relevant data such as logs, screenshots, etc…)

1 Like

Most likely, you have a SIM app which goes into a reset loop. When that condition is detected, the system stops displaying SIM app icon in the app grid and the “SIM card removed” message is displayed. If you don’t really need the SIM app (for authentication purposes or whatever) and your SIM card registers all right after reset, then you can probably just ignore it and keep using the phone normally. I would double-check that voice calls and text messages still work, though.

I have such a SIM card myself but haven’t been able to figure out what makes it so unhappy.

An alternative would be a telephony reset loop which would make the phone even more unusable and in addition to that cause a battery drain. That’s significantly worse.


Showing “SIM app icon at the app grid”.

I’m not sure what a SIM app is? Certainly there are no apps on the Sailfish App grid that appear to be ‘SIM Apps’, just the normal mix of Sailfish native apps and a few android apps (Facebook, LinkedIn, etc) for social media. None have anything to do, as far as I know, directly with the SIM card. When the error occurs nothing works on the mobile front - not data and not calls. As soon as you try and do anything in that area you simply get another error message like ‘SIM not present’ (I can’t remember the exact words in the error message, but its something like this). You can’t even access the mobile menus in the Sailfish settings app. Jolla have been aware of this issue for some years now and even proposed a workaround of disabling the SIM toolkit (whatever that is) from the command line back in 2018 or thereabouts on the old Jolla Together forum. I tried this but it didn’t make any difference. The issue seems to have been forgotten about since then with no permanent fix ever being found/implemented, but multiple users are still experiencing it even with the latest 4.1 release. Its really sad. Sailfish is a great OS when it works … trouble is that it hardly ever does reliably across many key areas for years at a time :disappointed: A lot of forum contributors keep saying how wonderful it is and that we should just be happy with what such a small team at Jolla have accomplished. I don’t disagree with the latter … but if the basics don’t work reliably then nobody is ever going to trust Sailfish as their only phone and daily driver and it will slowly and surely fade away as better OS’s come along.

“SIM app” and “SIM toolkit” is basically the same thing. The full name used by the spec is “SIM Application Toolkit”:

[3GPP TS 51.014]
The SIM Application Toolkit provides mechanisms which allow applications, existing in the SIM, to interact and operate with any Mobile Equipment (ME), which supports the specific mechanism(s) required by the application.

The issue is a quite rare one, and the only similar case which I’ve been able to debug didn’t yield any clues. And in my (and not only my) case the SIM card continues to be functioning properly after STK gets automatically disabled by ofono. You lose the ability to communicate with the SIM via this STK interface but otherwise everything is fine.

I haven’t seen a case (since Intex AquaFish phones many years ago) when SIM would somehow get completely broken by SFOS and really required a power-cycle to start working again. STK is a prime suspect here because it’s pretty much the only case when PDU is being constructed on the SFOS side and sent to the SIM as is. That has a potential of triggering a bug in the code which handles those PDUs inside the SIM card.

You should be able to completely disable this STK thing by adding enableSimToolkit=false to the [Settings] section of /etc/ofono/ril_subscription.conf file:

There’s no way to disable STK on a per-SIM basis, unfortunately. It can be done per-slot though, if you place that enableSimToolkit=false statement in the appropriate [ril_0] or [ril_1] section.

And yes, I understand your frustration. BTW I also use XA2 as a daily phone with various SIM cards and don’t have any telephony issues whatsoever🤷‍♂️